tv Piers Morgan Tonight CNN July 21, 2012 5:00am-6:00am EDT
>> no matter where you stand on guns, we have a right to hear from both of them concretely. not just in general. specifically, what are they going to do about guns. and maybe every governor should stand up. but in the end, it is really the leadership at a national level, which is whoever's going to be president of the united states starting next january 1. what are they going to do about guns? >> i agree with mayor bloomberg. i fully respect the second amendment and every american's desire to defend themselves in their homes. i simply don't believe the framers of the constitution would have ever envisioned this disturbed young man. specifically to murder fellow americans. there are now almost as many guns in america as there are people and this could only surely lead to more senseless death. something has to be done. and that debate will start tonight.
first, we start with our focus on the victims. with me now is a family who was in the theater and survived the massacre. they were at the premiere when the killer opened fire. they join me now for an exclusive interview. welcome to you both. an appalling day for you, for those who lost their lives, for america. tell me what happened. what was the first that you knew that this was going down? >> the first thing that happened is he came in through the exit door, through, you know, what is being said is tear gas. it was thrown across the theater and it popped and you see the smoke coming out. it almost hit somebody. at first you're thinking, oh, it's a prank. and he walks out and comes back in and next thing you know, you just see the flashes just coming out of his gun and that's when it was like this isn't a joke, this is real.
as that was happening, jamie yelled -- >> patricia, i'm terribly sorry, i have to hold you for one moment. >> okay. >> the press conference down in aurora is going to start. we'll go live to the press conference and i'll come straight back to you and jamie. >> our governor, governor hickenlooper, makes remarks. governor hickenlooper. >> so this has been a long day and i appreciate how long a day it's been for all of you in the media. we are seeing the community rise up and do the things that great communities do. we're dealing with this. 70 casualties, not 71, there was a double reporting there, but the stories that are going to
come out of this of how in a remarkably short time the police force in aurora responded to this situation. their efficiency in making an apprehension. the ability of our hospitals in remarkably short order to take care of all of these casualties, in an incredible system -- not to say -- i'm not saying it was all perfect but as this story is told, it will be remarkable. as of 3:30, we still had 30 patients in hospitals. 11 still in critical condition. you know, this is -- it's an act that defies description. you can't connect emotions that we commonly think of. i mean, everyone i've talked to all day is filled with an anger
that can't find focus. and i think the challenge for all of us as a community is to recognize we have to move past that. obviously there's going to be a level of accountability to this. individual is clearly disturbed. either we will or we will not know exactly the roots of that, of how deep that disturbance is. we know how deep it is but where it came from. but we are clear that we are going to rise back and lift ourselves above this. i visited several of the families in the hospital and we're going to have obviously some when you have that many people that have been injured you're going to have people with lifetime disabilities. and we're already as a community beginning to come together givingfirst.org within three hours we had $125,000 of matching gifts so as they raise
money this is through one of the hospitals but all the hospitals are going to participate. to make sure the victims of of this senseless act of violence that -- again, there just aren't words. we want to do everything we can to make sure the victims are brought back. in every way. and supported in every way that we can. we're not going to let this community be defined by such a -- you know, if i had more sleep i might have a better vocabulary. anyway, i do think that the first responders were unbelievable, and their ability to work together and coordinate. our support from the federal government has been incredible. secretary napolitano call me from homeland security earlier
this morning and wanted to do everything she could. she was a little late because president obama called me before that. but not till after he called mayor hogan. he called the police chief. he called -- the whole country recognizes that this is something we don't accept, we can't explain at this point. but we're not -- we're not going to just let it happen to us. we're going to push back. i also -- mayor hogan's not here. his leadership has been remarkable. and in times like this, you see, you know, what is the true quality of people and how can they deal with situations that, you know, there's no training, there's no way you can prepare for something like this. i think the way he's handled all the integration of the different efforts between the federal and the state, the county and the
local, it really is a remarkable skill. he's been able to keep everybody focused together. no one's pointing fingers. everybody's looking forward to the next step. all right, this has happened what do we do next? so in that sense -- and chief hot's unbelievable. i don't think i've ever done this but i think you should all give chief oates a hand. so i'll give it back to chief oates. >> okay, thank you, governor. i want to point out that standing behind me are quite a few of our elected city officials and our state representatives. congressman pearl mutter's also with us. also joining me here is special agent jimmy cone of the fbi and special agent andrew traver of atf. our federal partners have been absolutely tremendous in supporting us. i want to start by saying how proud i am of the men and women
of the aurora police department and fire department and mike garcia from the fire department, the chief of the fire department is also here with us. okay. we got to straighten out some numbers. there are a total of 70 injured in this event. as of this time, 12 dead. still the number is 10 in the theater and the last of the bodies were removed from the theater a little after 5:00 this afternoon. i want to correct one thing. i think earlier today i said the others were all hit by gunfire. i now know a handful of the people who were brought to area hospitals were not hit by gunfire but suffered other injured as a result of the chaos and trauma in the theater. and i can't tell you how many that is but it's a small number. nearly everyone was shot. little information about our subject and the weapons he obtained. in the last 60 days, he sured four guns at local metro gun shops and through the internet he purchased over 6,000 rounds of ammunition.
more than 3,000 rounds of 223 ammunition for the assault rifle. 3,000 rounds of .40 caliber ammunition for the two glocks in his possession. and 300 rounds for the 12 gauge shotgun. also through the internet, he purchased multiple magazines for the 223 caliber assault rifle, including one 100-round drum magazine, which was recovered from the scene. i've been asked, was the weapon automatic or semiautomatic. i can't answer that question now. even if it was semiautomatic, i'm told by experts that with that drum magazine, he could have gotten off 50 to 60 rounds, even if it was semiautomatic, within one minute. and as far as we know, it was a pretty rapid pace of fire in that theater.
this evening at 4:00, members of the police department and the many supporting agencies that have provided victim service advocates to support us met with approximately seven family and friends -- 70 members of family and friends who have not had an accounting of their missing loved ones. we met with them for approximately 90 minutes. we discussed all our efforts to identify the 10 bodies in the theater. and did the best we could to deal with their grief and anguish. we are hopeful that sometime in the next hour we will get a confirmed list of the ten deceased and we will begin the agonizing process of meeting with those families and confirming what has happened to their loved ones. i can't emphasize enough the support of all our colleaguings in local law enforcement in handing that extraordinarily difficult task.
we're also aided by our own police department psychologists. aurora public schools has made available two high schools for tomorrow beginning at 9:00 a.m. for professional grief counseling and other resources, including the resources of aurora mental health and the red cross. those two schools will open at 9:00 a.m. superen tndant john barry was with us to meet with the families and the support of the superintendent and the aurora public schools has been absolutely tremendous. in addition, i'll talk a little about the paris street location. we evacuated five apartment buildings including the apartment building of the subject. those evacuees have been staying at central high school. again, with the support of aurora public schools. with regard to the paris location, it is a very vexing problem how to enter that apartment safely. i personally have never seen anything like what the pictures show us is in there.
i'm a layman when it comes to bomb stuff. i see an awful lot of wires, trip wires, jars full of ammunition, jars full of liquid. some things that look like mortar rounds. we have a lot of challenge, to get in there safely. we decided this evening to postpone action on that till tomorrow sometime. all our folks were pretty well taxed and we needed a break and we're also bringing in extra resources to consult on exactly how to deal with that problem. we're hopeful we will address and resolve that problem tomorrow. unfortunately, this means that the families that were evacuated have to spend an evening in the evacuation center. we are at this time allowing families, one by one, to go back into four of the five buildings to retrieve necessities like medication and those kinds of things.
and, again, our hope is that we'll resolve that tomorrow. with regard to the investigation, i can tell you, we know a little bit more about our subject. we know he recently left the university of colorado medical school neuroscience program -- it was a voluntary separation. we know he originally hails from riverside, california and attended uc riverside california campus. neighbors report to us he lived alone and he kept to himself. i have the same cautions about the social media. one of the things modern investigators do is watch what appears on the internet to see what clues we can find and we know you do that too, okay, and in the era of blogs and everything else, we just caution you that everything you read may not be true. okay. with regard to our theaters in aurora. we are -- there are four theaters in aurora that show this movie.
until further notice, we will have some extra security at those theaters out of an abundance of caution. i will tell you, i've been getting phone calls from some colleagues around the country asking about this. i told them i don't know what you should do at your theaters but that's what we're going to do in aurora for a while it we are fully staffed in all our districts. we're on 12-hour shifts because of the demands to support the crime scene. and the new event on paris. and thanks to the arapaho s.w.a.t. team and the denver s.w.a.t. team, if we have any demand over the days for those assets, we will turn to our colleagues to help us. the aurora town centre will be open tomorrow. they've been cooperative with the aurora police department. i have a new tip line. if there are further tips that anyone wants to call, it's the crime stoppers number. 720-913-stop. or 720-913-7867.
we're also offering a general information line. for the community. not for the press. i think the press knows how to reach us. this is for the community if they have questions. the general information number is 303-739-1862. our suspect is now in arapaho county jail. i just got a call from the sheriff. he asked me if i wanted his picture released. i i said no. so i won't be releasing his picture. he'll be arraigned or have first court appearance 8:30 a.m. on monday in arapahoe district court. there has been an overwhelming outpouring of support for our families, for or victims, for our community, for our cops, for our firefighters, for our ems people, for our investigators, by this entire community. we've received concern and condolences.
just remarkable. our community restaurants started pouring pizzas and food into our station houses here. just to show support for our police department. and it's just absolutely wonderful. on behalf of the city, sunday at 6:30 p.m., there will be a prayer vigil right here in front of the aurora municipal center. we know the governor and the mayor will speak and there will be be an appropriate moment for reflection for our community. finally, i want to offer a huge thanks to our coroner, michael doverson, for all he has done, to help us with the crime scene today and to expedite the recovery and identification of the bodies which is so, so important to our community. and in terms of the next press briefing, we expect to be able to brief you tomorrow afternoon right here at 2:00 p.m. i will take questions.
>> any sign of a motive at this point? >> if we have information about a motive, we will not share it with you. we'd let that play out in the course of the criminal prosecution. >> he's talking to you though? >> i won't talk about his admissions. yes? >> -- that quick legal -- >> my understanding is all the weapons he possessed, he possessed legally. and all the clips he possessed, he possessed legally. and all the ammunition he possessed, he possessed legally. yes? [ inaudible ] no, i won't discuss how he got in. that's part of our investigation. as much as i'd like to be cooperative with you folks, the most important thing is there is justice for these victims. and that justice will occur in a courtroom. so whenever i say no here, it's because there's a higher reason and that is to make sure he is
prosecuted correctly. yes, ma'am. [ inaudible ] no, i can't. >> describe -- >> i gave a description this morning of his appearance. he was dressed all in black. for those of you who don't have this. entirely in black, wearing a gas mask, a ballistic helmet, a tactical ballistic vest. tactical means places to put all kinds of gear and clips. in addition, it was bulletproof. or bullet resistant. he was wearing ballistic legging in case he took a round in the legs. he was wearing throat protection and groin protection and he was wearing black tactical gloves. so that's what he looks like in the theater. >> chief, can you tell us if the devices that -- >> i don't know enough about --
those of you who were here this morning know i reported that he released it appears two devices that set off some sort of smoke and/or chemical irritant. i don't know enough about them right now to answer any questions. yes? [ inaudible ] our cops went through a lot. as i told you this morning, they rushed people out of that theater, into police cars. i've heard some compelling stories. one of the things we're working on is how we're going to deal with our own trauma. and we spent some time today with our three department psychologists and somehow in the next couple of days when this is -- when this has slowed down, one of our highest priorities is to deal with our own officers and how they cope with this event. and that's really all i have to say about this. anything else?
yes? >> -- armor -- >> i don't know where he got the armor. >> what about the mask? >> it was a gas mask. >> the families -- >> i apologize, i don't now how many families are evacuated. there are a total of five. they're roughly the same size. three story buildings were anywhere from 6 to 10 units on a floor so you can do the math. >> -- the armor the -- obviously s.w.a.t. was not -- but they got there really quickly -- >> the officers who responded were wearing a regular uniform equipment including ballistic protection. we had a lot of people out last night. because it was a friday night and we have a special summer initiative under way where there's extra officers on the street. we were fortunate we had about 25 officers there like that. as i said earlier, in the end,
somewhere between 150 to 200 officers and deputies fairly quickly there after. sorry? [ inaudible ] i have no way to answer that question. if i knew, i wouldn't. [ inaudible ] i was asked if he had an attorney. yes, he has an attorney. and the question was, i'm sorry, was -- [ inaudible ] >> off-duty security at the theater -- >> yes, and we usually work off-duty security at the theater on weekends. this was a thursday night. and we were not there. but we were there within about 90 seconds. [ inaudible ] oh, i'm doing just fine. yes, sir. [ inaudible ]
i have some information from my detectives on his demeanor since his arrest but i will not share it with you. one more question. [ inaudible ] i don't know how many bullets went through the adjacent theater. i know enough went through that one person was hit. that concludes this briefing. thank you very much, folks. >> an emotional press conference there with dan oates who's the aurora police chief in colorado. 12 dead. 70 injured. 12 dead, 58 people injured. one less than was first suspended. 30 hospitalized. 11 remain in critical condition. not everybody was hit by gunfire. some were injured in the melee that followed. he also released some extraordinary statistics about the ammunition that he built up. 6,000 rounds of ammunition he got on the internet. including 100-round drum magazine for an assault rifle which he then deployed which could have fired 50 or 60 rounds
in one minute. quite extraordinary that he should find this legally obtainable in modern america. we'll come back and discuss that after the break and also talk to some of the victims of this atrocity. when you have diabetes... your doctor will say get smart about your weight. i tried weight loss plans... but their shakes aren't always made for people with diabetes. that's why there's glucerna hunger smart shakes. they have carb steady, with carbs that digest slowly to help minimize blood sugar spikes. and they have six grams of sugars. with fifteen grams of protein to help manage hunger... look who's getting smart about her weight. [ male announcer ] glucerna hunger smart. a smart way to help manage hunger and diabetes. [ male announcer ] we believe small things can make a big difference. like how a little oil from here can be such a big thing in an old friend's life. purina one discovered that by blending enhanced botanical oils into our food,
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and-month-old baby son. they were at the premiere when the killer opened fire. let's get back to our exclusive interview. i can see your young one there -- clearly has been a long and traumatic day. perfectly understandable she should be a bit upset by now tell me again. i'll start -- i've had a few people tweeting me to say ask them first of all why were they at the cinema with two such very young children, answer that question first. >> i take my kids to the movies all the time. it's something you don't expect. a family movie. it's even, you know, pg-13. i don't know. we just moved from new mexico. we don't have a lot of family here. we're huge batman fans. my 4-year-old daughter just loves batman. and we were excited. so we, you know, last minute actually decided to go and get
tickets and go as a family to the movies. >> and once -- >> and also -- >> jamie, let me ask you, to be honest with you, i'm not that interested in why you took your children -- you're perfectly entitled to. i'd rather move to what happened to you. i know, patricia, you were hit by a bullet. did you realize at the time you'd been hit by a bullet? >> well, at the -- i did. i could feel the sensation. i felt the tingling in my calf, and i remember at the time that i got hit, the man -- the young man, who was next to me, got hit as well, and at the same time that i, you know, screamed "i think i got hit" he at the same time screamed as well and we both fell to the ground and i got hit when i was -- >> jamie, could you -- want to ask jamie, could you see the killer, could you see him? >> no, i was in the middle -- i
ended up on the row over, and then i ended up crawling out. and i'm, like, i'm going to run out. i'm like, you can't run out. so i turned back and i fell up the stairs and land on my forearm and i lay the baby down and i'm contemplaing my steps. i find myself standing up and looking around. i could see through the corner of my eye. my idea was don't let -- don't see him. if you see him, he can see you. stay low. stay -- just try to hide. and people are falling all around, like, you're just hearing screaming. right next to me. i'm still standing. i don't know why -- how i'm not hit. but every time a bullet flashed, you just hear the sound and your ears are ringing. you're like, this one's going to kill me. this one -- this is it. >> it's absolutely horrific. i can quite understand why you're feeling, now, emotional
about this. you had your family there, your whole family, and potentially facing the prospect of none of you getting out of that cinema alive when you go and watch a movie. when you heard -- i don't know if you heard the police just now revealing some of the details of the armory. 6,000 rounds of ammunition he the ball on the internet. four weapons, including the assault rifle. there's a huge debate going on all around america today about gun control and so on. what is your reaction ton the fact that this young man was legally able in the last two months to obtain so much ammunition and commit this atrocity? >> it's -- it's not right, like, i mean, yes, people are entitled to things but how much weapons do you need? how many weapons? these are destructive -- they're not just handguns, they're shotguns, assault rifles, like
you said. they're just so fast at killing people. like you just realize how many people. it can kill so fast. 'cause, i mean, this only took three minutes and 70 shot, 10, 12 dead. it's just -- these are weapons of destruction. it's horrific. >> jamie, did you think that you were going to get out alive or did you fear that everyone was going to die in there? >> no, this -- my thought was this is how it ends. this is how i die. this can't be the way i die. this can't be the way my son dies. he's 4 months. this can't be the way my girlfriend dies and our stepdaughter dies. she's 4 years. and just so many things pacing through your head. but every time you see a gunshot, i see it through the corner of my eye, see someone drop, and i'm trying to, like,
duck, like just trying to get out of the way. and people are falling next to me. but i'm still -- i'm still all right. just thinking this is it. and i just found myself at a point where i had to do something. and it was when i was going to run down the stairs with ethan. like, he's going to see me and he's going to shoot me. at the point you -- at the time you don't realize it's one person. you think it's -- a million possibilities as you're going through your head. you're thinking, are they coming from the stairs? are there more than one? just shots are going off all over. so i find myself just standing. and just my son's on the floor. and i'm looking around. like, i see the balcony because
the had stoppeded for a second. i look over to see if i can jump over because i'm on top of the balcony and i'm contemplating in my head, like, can i jump, and can i jump with ethan without him breaking his neck or me landing on him. as i turn to, like, find ethan in the dark of the theater with the gas, like, i'm just so disoriented and i lose him. i just lose him. and then he opened fire again. i'm, like, you got to get ethan, you got to get ethan. so i'm trying, i'm, like, you got to run back, you got to find him and get him. and then once i say, just jump if you run back, you're dead. that's it. just jump. just pray that he won't kill your 4-month-old. just pray that he don't find him. so i jump and i run. i land and i'm running. i'm running. i'm looking behind me to see if people are running behind me. i'm looking for her. and for our daughter. i don't see them.
telling me, just go back in, go back. like, you can't leave them in there. it's like, if you go back, you're dead too. what if our kids live and then they're orphans with no parents. you're just thinking, like, please let them go alive. then i'm thinking, i don't want to live if they all die it i don't want to live if they all die. just please. i'm praying, just praying. just please let them get out alive. i got to my truck and i drov across to the mall. i'm try to call 911 and trying to call patricia. it's going -- it's just ringing. every time it rings, i'm like, they're dead, they're dead, your whole family's dead. just they're dead. and i couldn't think. i got a phone call from a colorado number and i answered it and thank god it was patricia.
just telling me. i was waiting for her to tell me, like, i have -- do you have ethan. i didn't know what to tell her. thank god, she had them both, she had them both. and she was -- i was just expecting someone to be shot in the -- i mean, shot in the leg. i was just expecting someone to be dead. i didn't think any of us were getting out alive, much less all four of us. >> jamie, it's utterly harrowing hearing your account of this. i'm just so glad you made it. it's been an appalling day for america. patricia, there is one happy ending to this and that is what happened in the hospital later on. that jamie did something very special. tell me about that. >> we were in the hospital for about a good ten minutes. and he'd gone to the restroom
and came out and he just looked at me and he said i know this isn't the time or the place. he's like but will you marry me. and i said yes. you just -- something like this just -- knowing -- going through ten minutes of thinking that he was dead and i'd never see him again, it just -- you never want that feeling again. and it's -- sorry. >> well, it's been an extraordinary conversation with you both. i'm so grateful that you're alive. i'm so grateful your children are alive. i wish you all the very best with your marriage and your future lives together. lives that you weren't even sure you would have after what happened last night. it is a scandal this type of thing can happen to americans in a movie theater and that's got to be dealt with. but for now thank you very much for joining me.
we are back with breaking news on the colorado movie theater shooting. identified as 24-year-old james holmes. tom myer used to live right next door to holmes in san diego. he joins me now. tell me what your reaction was when you heard that the killer who's been taken into custody was the same person that you lived next to. >> i'm shocked and saddened. the whole situation. the family very nice. the young man is quiet, very nice, very good student.
i guess the problem we had too much, you know, violence in movie and game, the video games. i guess also the parent right -- to teach their children right and wrong was taken away, the court system, the educational system. you've got failing children and failing american family too. >> i mean, we don't know yet exactly what the motivation was, what may have caused him to do this. you lived next to him for ten years. you shared christmas with the family. you knew them better than almost anybody. you say there was no sign of this. what kind of boy was he? >> he's a quiet guy, you know, very nice. when i come out, i see him, you know, like mowing the lawn or washing the car for his parents. typical american boy. also like, you know, one time we have christmas get-together with the neighbor at his home.
he served my children cookie and hot cocoa, something, talking to them. quiet, nice guy. >> his mother still lives next door to you. have you been able to speak to her today? >> no, i haven't been able to talk to her because too many people tried to get her and she want to, you know, not to talk to anybody. >> it's obviously deeply shocking for them as well. we still await more details of what may have motivated him. tom mai, thank you very much for joining me. >> yeah, thank you very much. >> what happened in colorado is a tragedy. could stricter gun laws have prevented it? joining me now is harvard law's lawrence tribe, professor of constitutional law. mr. tribe, it's a debate that rages every single time there a shooting of this nature. this is the worst shooting in terms of people who were hit by gunfire that america has ever seen. is this enough, now, to prompt stricter gun control? and would stricter gun control have made a difference in this case?
>> first of all, i want to express my grief and my deep condolences for the victims. i think gun control is overdue. the second amendment does protect the rights of people to possess weapons for self-defense in the home. that's what the supreme court said. but it certainly does not protect the right to buy 6,000 rounds of ammunition on the internet or to buy four gaubs including automatic and semiautomatic weapons in a short period of time. there's no reason in the constitution why we as a civilized society couldn't get our heads around a problem like that. who, frankly, make a living out of restricting the political possibility of gun control. we have to do something about it.
i don't know how many killings, how much slaughters it's going to take, before the nation wakes up to the need to address the problem. i think we fool ourses if we say better and stricter gun control will solve the problem. there are all kinds of things we need to do. we may need to do things about exits at movie theaters. so if they are opened, there's an alarm that goes off if they are not immediately shut. we may need to do something about our educational system. we may need to do something about the culture of violence. but i think this is a time for the country to come together. and it's certainly not a time for us to divide over the question of whether we can impose reasonable controls on ammunition. i think everyone agrees that the constitution permits that. it's simply our political system that has failed to act adequately.
>> professor tribe, very eloquently put, thank you very much for joining me. >> thank you, piers. >> the most deadly shooting in american history was at virginia tech university in 2007. kolb was shot four times by the gunman who killed 32 people. he now worked on legislation with the brady campaign to prevent gun violence. david koppel is a law professor at denver university. at the cato institute. you heard there from professor tribe. it is time now for gun control to be strengthened. what is your reaction to that? >> honestly, piers, i think this is the wrong night to be doing this and i really wish you'd waited to have this segment till after the funerals. this is a time in colorado and nationally when it would have been better to have more of the segments like you did before with the family and when people could be unified in helping the victims. >> well, if i could jump in there --
>> well, we're going to have a debate on this -- >> wait, let me just challenge you on that -- >> -- people be unified before you divide them. >> let me challenge you on what you just said. a lot of people said that today. a lot people have said this is the, not the day to debate this. when you have a young man like this able to legally get 6,000 rounds of ammunition off the internet to buy four weapons including an assault rifle. and for all of this to be perfectly legal in modern america. allowing him to carry out the biggest shooting in the history of the united states. that, i'm afraid, means it's too late for this debate. for those people who lost their lives. so don't patronize me about when we should be talking about the gun control debate. you tell me a good reason why we should not strengthen the law now to stop another young man like him going into a store tomorrow, buying four more weapons, 6,000 rounds of
ammunition on the internet, and killing and shooting another 70 people in america. >> because we don't even know the full facts of this situation yet. and it's another reason it would have been prudent for you to wait a few days where we know more about this. nobody's been able to come up with any proposal specific about the facts of this case. partly because the facts are still being developed. and i know -- you've said many times on the air, america's got too many guns. you want to drastically reduce the number of guns. if your whole point is there's too many gun, we've got to get rid of lots of them, drastically constrict things and you think somehow that's going to make it better, well, there's no real evidence it will. if you want to talk about specific reforms that might involve this specific guy and prevent future people like him, that's fine. but let's wait till we find out the information instead of rushing the country into this pro con thing that i know sells a lot of commercials on tv but it's inappropriately divisive now. nobody's stopping you from having the segment on wednesday.
can you give people a little bit of breathing room -- >> okay, you've made your point. i'm really not interested in having a debate about whether we can debate gun control. given we now know this young man legally purchased these weapons in the last few months. he purchased a hundred-round drum magazine, allowing him to fire off 50 to 60 roundings in one minute in that movie theater. which is what has led to this mass slaughter and mass gun attack. given what has happened today, do you think there is now legitimate cause to press politicians for tougher gun control in america? >> piers, i think like you said that legitimate cause existed yesterday. and it exists today. it will exist tomorrow. this should be incentive for everybody to make their voice heard. because, you know, with these guys it's never the time to talk about it. you know what, we're not going to talk about it seriously as a nation till the american people get involved in this issue and demand accountability from our
leaders not to do the bidding of the gun lobby but to represent the people they've been elected to represent and to prevent tragedies like this. if mr. kopel wants to talk about specific things that can be done to prevent specific people from getting specific guns, you know, what about background checks that can prevent convicted felons, convicted domestic abusers from getting their hands on guns? the gun lobby works against laws like that on a regular basis and they'll be able to continue to till we make our voice heard which is why the brady campaign is launching a petition told at bradycampaign.org. that for americans to sign. to demand that our elected officials do something about this issue. to stop arming dangerous people like this young man was armed today. >> yeah, and just to be cleeshgs you've made it clear that you didn't wait. you acted today. because today is the day to act. to prevent something happening tomorrow. let me go to colin gooddard. you surviveled the virginia tech shooting. you went to capitol hill to try to persuade congress to try to
change the gun control laws. there are many strands to this. in chicago they have pretty tough laws and they have an almost wild west scenario there. but that is to do in my view, the incredible amount of guns that are in circulation illegally. there are apparently nearly as many guns in circulation in america as there are people. the more guns you have, the more likely is they're going to get used. colin, what is the answer. how are you going to persuade law makers and politicians, i've been told president obama won't mention guns before the election. >> the american people need to express their outrage collectly to every single level. this will something that will change when the american people
want it to change. shooting after shooting, we hear words, we see letters, and then they shrug their shoulders and that's it. that can no longer happen. we need to hold these people directly accountable. these people geg their representatives. doing the bidding of people who profit from selling firearms to anybody and ultimately end up killing innocent people. it's insane in this world that we have to have this conversation. it is way overdue. >> and let me reclarify what i said at the start of this program. i respect the second amendment. i respect the average americans' right to defend themselves in their own homes. this is a totally different issue that we're talking about today. it's got nothing to do with that right whatsoever. mr. kopel, if you want to come back when it suits you, i will be waiting at any time to debate this with you. we're going to move on. when we come back, gabrielle giffords what he would do.
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replace her when she stepped down earlier this year. ron barber, today must have brought been extremely difficult memories for you. what was your reaction to what happened? >> well, it did bring back some terrible memories. obviously i learned about the shooting as i was boarding my plane to come back to washington to come home for the weekend. i'll be meeting with constituents tomorrow, i'm sure i will hear a lot about this when i meet with them. it did bring back some pretty terrible memories. i was listening earlier when you were interviewing the family, and i was very moved. in fact, i have to tell you, i'm very emotional coming out of hearing that interview, about the tragedy, the almost tragedy that happened to that family and the loss of 12 people, more injured.
we hope they all survive. having been through this a year and a half ago, on a smaller scale, thank god, but still, it has a lot of similarities. i know what's going on right now with those families who have lost loved ones and who are waiting to see their other loved ones recover. i'm thinking back, for example, to the phone call that my wife got from someone who was at congress on your corner when the shooting occurred, telling her that your husband has been shot. and she said is he alive? and the woman said to her he's still with us. and i know conversations like that have been going on since the shooting starting. and all i can say is i'm heartbroken when i know what's going on in aurora with those
families who have lost relatives and friends and those who are still recovering. it's a tragic event, and one would hope it never happens again. and i'm just heartbroken for the families and i want them to know how deeply i feel about this and how personal this is with me. >> ron, it is, no one can speak more eloquently about this than you can. i can't let you go without asking you about the gun control debate. you're a poll situation and you'll be responsible for trying to force through some changes. do you think it's possible? do you think washington is going to wake up tomorrow, perhaps, and realize that america simply can't keep having this number of outrages involving guns? >> well, i think any decision of serious political issues or policy issues are not going to be had now. and i'll tell you why. in my months in the congress, i've been sworn in a month ago. what i know is going on is very little. we have passed some important legislation. the department of defense budget yesterday and a week or so ago,
a budget that will help us build our infrastructure in transportation. but between now and the election, i really believe that very little is going to be said about major policy issues, including this one of the right now i'm just heartsick over what happened. i have to say, it's deeply moving to me at so many levels about the families that have lost loved ones and i remember what my wife and family are going through. and i know that's happening over and over again in aurora. and i want to say to the people of aurora, know that we're with you. we care about you, we're sending our prayers to you. hold on to each other, and please, have hope and look forward to a brighter tomorrow, even though today looks very dark. >> thank you for those powerful words. we'll be back after this break. why not make lunch more than just lunch?
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one of the victims of the colorado shooting was jessica ghawi. the young woman moved to denver to follow her dream. she narrowly he skapd death last month in a toronto shopping mal. joining me now is her boyfriend, jay. let me offer you my sincere condolences. how are you bearing up? what are your feelings about what's happened here today?
>> first of all, thanks a lot. i appreciate it. a lot of people have been contacting me, people i don't know, saying they feel for me and jesse's family. i can't really describe how i feel right now. it still hasn't set in fully. i can't can't believe it. i mean, i still think -- i can't believe she's not here still. and i just want to make sure that as much as the attention as possible is on jessie and the other lives lost and that as little attention is paid to the person who did this. it's just what i feel. it's all i can really think about. >> i can see how difficult this is for you. it's the end of our show. i can't think of a more powerful, eloquent way to end it. and i send you my deepest
sympathies at your lost for what has been an awful day for america. my thoughts are with all the families who have lost loved ones today. thank you very much. all the families of all those who lost loved ones today. thank you very much. that's all for us tonight. ac "360" starts now. from cnn world headquarters in atlanta, this is "early start weekend." the largest mass shooting in u.s. history. a gunman opens fire in a colorado movie theater, wounding 58, killing 12. and we can now tell you two more of their names. >> he had his hair painted red. he said he was the joker. #. >> new details revealed about the suspected shooter. he lived alone, kept to himself. but james holmes was also a one-time ph.d. canned tate and
an honor student. more on the man now in custody. plus -- >> i personally have never seen anything like what the pictures show us is in there. >> trip wires, gas canisters, booby-traps. an apartment so dangerous law enforcement still can't get inside. we'll take you live to the suspect's building. it's saturday, july 21st. good morning, everyone. i'm gary tuchman. a little over 24 hours ago the nation first heard the news. a shooter opened fire inside a crowded theater. 12 people dead, 58 others injured. as many as 11 of those are in the hospital in critical condition. we'll get you out to the scene in just a moment. first, i want to show you this picture.